RNC Night Three: Let's Watch America Be First And Mike Pence Be Number Two! A Livebloog!
We hope you are all ready for the pageantry, excitement, and top-notch America-Firsting of night three of the Republican National Convention, coming to you live from Cleveland, Ohio, and Yr Wonkette. Yr Doktor Zoom will be your co-pilot tonight, which is pretty appropriate, since we all know that the America First Committee was very popular in the 1930s with that one pilot guy who wanted to keep America from going to war against his very good friends the Germans. And Philip Roth wrote a pretty good novel about that time the pilot guy became president and the USA didn't antagonize Germany too much, either.
Speaking of incredible fiction, tonight we're going to meet our next Vice President and also Ted Cruz, who we already know better than we wish we did, may or may not endorse Donald Trump. Our money is on "no endorsement," but will say things that sound teasingly close.
Here is the RNC's explanation of tonight's theme, Make America First Again, again:
America has always been an exceptional nation. Our Founding Fathers created a system of government that has protected our liberty, allowed American ingenuity to flourish, and lifted people out of poverty by creating the conditions for opportunity and prosperity. Unfortunately, years of bad policies and poor leadership have weakened our position in the world. Under a Trump administration, America will once again be a beacon of progress and opportunity.
In other words, more unfocused ranting about how terrible Hillary Clinton is. Whee! Let's join the festivities, shall we?
8:03 Dear god, they're starting out with Florida Governor Rick Scott, who is here to personally kill some people by denying them Medicaid! It's times like this that we are glad our desk faces away from the television.
8:05 First speech and we're already getting right on the chants of "lock her up!"
8:08 Oh look, it's Laura Ingraham, who loves America more than all of you filthy liberals put together. She is here to shame us into loving America more. She knows there is dignity in poverty, as long as nobody helps you. We're looking for bread bags on her feet, but the camera hasn't pulled out far enough.
8:12 When Laura Ingraham was a little girl, she asked he mom why people on TV were burning the American flag. We remember that show: Battle of the Network Flag Burners. It was only on one summer, as we recall. Her mom said it was because their parents never taught them respect. We were worried for a moment that she was going to start singing the Aretha Franklin song, but we were spared.
8:15: We are now being treated to a list of all the ways Hillary Clinton does not love America enough. And then we were treated to the story of how in 1980, Ronald Reagan rode in on a unicorn and saved America with a six-gun and a smile. Would you believe that Donald Trump is going to do exactly the same thing? It's true: A lady on TV would not lie to you.
8:18 Discussion question: Is America in 2016 a better place or a worse place than America in 1980? It is debatable, because manbuns. She is really good at #jokes!
8:22 We'll give Scott and Ingraham this much: They at least can deliver a speech that's fairly coherent, and doesn't go off on weirdass tangents. But that will be along later, apparently!
8:25 It's Phillip Ruffin, a business partner of Donald Trump, who says Trump's handshake is worth any contract. Which is true, because his contracts ain't worth shit either.
8:26 Oh god, it's Republicans talking about real estate. Suddenly we are at a childhood family holiday gathering again. The flashbacks are coming hard, man.
8:28 We are being assured that Donald Trump will do for America what he's done for his businesses. We don't think these guys have any idea how that sounds!
"A tsunami is coming, and his name is Donald Trump!" Oh boy, a relentless wave of destruction!
8:30 Pam Bondi is here to tell us about how the law applies to everyone. Except maybe if they're running a scammy "university" and they give you a campaign contribution.
8:35 Pam Bondi promises Donald Trump will take control of our borders, get rid of all the illegals, and stop empathizing with our enemies, which is a thing Hillary Clinton does all the time. We missed that position paper. Also, yadda yadda Second Amendment. And we'll finally start coming after ISIS, instead of simply bombing the hell out of them like we have been. Where's Anderson Cooper when you need him?
8:38 And now a tribute to today's historic anniversary of the Apollo 11 landing, from the party that wants to prevent NASA from doing too much science that might give us answers the oil industry doesn't like. Thank God when you look at the stars, because telescopes are of the Devil.
8:42 Former space shuttle pilot Eileen Collins is here to talk about the beauty of exploration, and is asking a room full of people who think the Moon is 6000 years old why we don't fund science enough. She managed that with a straight face!
8:45 And now, for balance, the NASA science lady is followed by MIchelle Van Etten, who sells snake oil pills to Alex Jones.
8:50 Homeschooling Snake Oil Lady is angry that the American Dream is being strangled by regulation, and we need a businessman like Donald Trump
ruining running this great nation, with economic liberty and multi-level marketing for all.
8:55 A warm round of applause for Ralph Alvarado, who's proud to be the first Hispanic member of the Kentucky General Assembly. Why is he so insistent on dividing us by mentioning ethnicity?
8:57 Will America go left, right, up, or down? We know that to truly prosper, America must go Up Up Down Down Left Right Left Right B A!
9:00 Daryl Scott, senior pastor of some church, is here to do some Make America Jesus First for us.
9:03 We are now getting a definition of patriotism. And liberals seem to think we are one nation among others, which is ridiculous, because we are the ONLY nation. lucky us, we're God's favorite! Rev. Scott has got a pretty good James T. Kirk going here, though. E PLEBNISTA!!!
"Place his hand on a Bible that he believes in" and take the oath of office was pretty good. Dogs barking madly all over!
9:07 Harold Hamm, an oil CEO, is here to tell us of the wonders of having a big beautiful carbon footprint. We're going to say right now that the fact check on Obama promising to "crucify the oil industry" is probably not entirely accurate.
9:10 Winner of the Biggest Stretch of the night: Orlando happened because we don't drill enough oil wells.
Remember, the American Dream is made of oiled seabirds!
9:12 Oh boy! Scott Walker! He will tell us all about how we can fight terrorism by busting unions!
9:15 This is at least sounding like a political convention, with call and response "America Deserves Better" -- it's still crap, but it appears to be staying on the rails tonight.
9:17 Crowd doesn't know whether to chant "America Deserves Better" or "lock her up!" so they chant "America Locks Better" -- at least that's true.
9:22 Scott Walker decides that the national economic recovery is all thanks to local Republican leaders, not to Barack Obama's economic policies. Hey, that sounds familiar!
9:25 And now a short film with Save-The-Children-and-Puppies music, which apparently is about how Donald Trump is the kindest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful human being who has ever walked the face of the Earth. She says she handles the Trumps' charitable donations. Maybe she can say where that money supposedly went.
9:28 Oh, it's Lynne Patton, who works with Eric Trump's foundation. She's here to list all the horrors of the last month. Says we must not allow attacks on the LGBTQ community, and yet Mike Pence will still accept the Veep nomination tonight.
9:33 Marco Rubio appears in a video. It causes riots.
9:35 It's Cruz time! Will he endorse? Will he tease an endorsement and hold back? Will he continue to have the most punchable face in America?
9:36 "I want to see our party's principles prevail in November" DEFINITELY not an endorsement, since Trump doesn't embody those. Except for the racism. He's got plenty of that.
9:38 When Barack Obama praised police officers who gave their lives while protecting protesters they disagreed with, it was divisive. When Ted Cruz does the same thing, it's noble. SO OBVIOUS!
9:40 The crowd gets its first decent "USA! USA! USA!" of the week going. Knew they could do it!
9:41 Rebecca: Is Ted Cruz giving the least offensive speech of the RNC? That's somethin'!
Robyn: It's certainly the vaguest.
9:43 Immediately after bemoaning how divided Americans are, how sad it is that we are so angry at each other, Cruz explains that Hillary Clinton thinks and says she cares about our children's future, but she doesn't.
9:45 The Blessed Second Amendment and the right to own all the guns you want is followed by the beauty of the right to life. Unless you get shot. Bummer.
9:46 States' Rights: the TRUE meaning of diversity
9:50 While we think about all this freedom, let's remember this, too:
9:51 Another wave of Democrats Did The KKK (and the Southern Strategy never happened) messages incoming!
9:52 Not a lot of love in the audience for "the family of Alton Sterling" who bravely called for an end to the violence. Why do you think that might be?
9:55 Cruz closes with a call to get out and vote in November. Didn't say for whom; only mentioned Trump at the beginning of the speech when he congratulated him winning the nomination.
9:57 Did we say "closes"? We are such optimists.
9:58 OK, now really finished. "Don't stay home in November" is about as far from an endorsement possible. Short of "DO stay home in November," at least. "Vote your conscience" is also not an endorsement
10:00 It's the Trump Family Endorsement Movie of Donald Trump, seeing as how that last fellow onstage didn't manage one.
10:02 Rebecca notes, in the Sekrit Chatcave: "We're gonna need a youtube of the trump country song. Donna isn't even dancing to it, and she rocks out to fucking London Bridge"
10:03 From the twitters:
10:05 Eric Trump is here. He isn't as suavay as Trump Junior. Trump Junior should get a QVC show. This guy can't read good and can't do other stuff good too. He said "movement" like the poo kind.
10:07 DONALD TRUMP IS RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT TO SAVE CHRISTMAS!
10:10 Rebecca here. Dok is gone for a moment, maybe to make a "movement." Shy is at the hospital seeing his dad, and the baby is crawling around eating her favorite snack, rusty nails, and I don't feel much like listening to the words in Schmendrick's mouth. That okay with you all? "Blah blah blah my dad signs fronts of checks not like you takers who insist on being paid the amount you were actually promised. Can you believe these idiots?"
10:10 Eric Trump should probably keep Oprah's name out his mouth. Oh, here comes "illegal immigrants kill people." And innocent Americans are "defenseless." I THOUGHT WE ALL HAD GUNS, HENGHHHH? Fuckin pussy.
10:13 Eric Trump is grateful for the life Donald Trump has to provided to him, his family, and "all his workers around the world." You know who should be more grateful? The small businesses that went bust-o after being paid pennies on the dollar for what they were owed, because "Trump felt like he'd paid enough already."
10:16 "Vote for the candidate who has never been a politician! Vote for the teacher who's never read books! Vote for the chef who has never had tastebuds! Vote for ... I got nothing.
10:18 Dok Zoom back now, and... Oh my god, Callista Gingrich was just extruded onto the stage!
10:20 Newt could be veep, but he at least demanded to be introduced by his wife. The most recent one.
10:22 Newt says there's only one candidate who'll uphold the Constitution. Pity his candidate doesn't seem to have even read the thing.
10:25 ISIS guys all over just said, "Hey, Newt said we're really strong! We ROCK!"
Credit where it's due: Newt is at least aware that ISIS has killed people who weren't Westerners. He has no answers, but at least he noticed.
10:28 So if Newt is saying we're losing the war to Radical Islam, is that kind of like giving aid and comfort to the enemy? Nice job of saying we're not at war with Islam -- just with a lot of Muslims, and you can't tell which ones we can trust.
10:30 Alex in the chatcave: One thing that every RNC speaker has in common is that they've all smirked within seconds of reciting a story of terrible carnage and violence.
10:31 Are you terrified yet? You really need to be terrified. How much is ISIS paying Newt for this?
10:33 from Bob Cesca
10:35 And Newt slithers off to wherever he goes every four years. Oh, right. Fox News.
10:40 It's Paul Ryan, here to do that stuff he does. Yes, introducing Mike Pence, a candidate whose name he can actually say on a live mic.
10:41 The crowd is so in love with Mike Pence! He is not Ted Cruz, for one thing.
10:42 "I'm a Christian, a conservative, and a Republican, in that order." But what about AN AMERICAN?
10:44 His political heroes were JFK and MLK. Two conservative Christians who would have agreed with Mike Pence if they were alive today.
10:45 Mike Pence pretty much oozes sincerity.
Welp, he's got a family, so we guess we gotta vote for him.
10:48 Pence gives good folksy. BOO, intellectuals!
10:50 Revisionism: Mitt Romney didn't invent Obamacare, Hillary did.
10:52 Where else would people vote for a Trump? Godwin's Law prevents us from saying.
10:55 You know, this is a pretty boring speech, comes right down to it. And we have utterly lost interest in anything Mike Pence is saying. Oh, he thinks Trump has great kids. On the other hand, we have to disagree: You can totally fake good kids.
10:58 "Secretary of the status quo" is doomed to be as forgotten as Paul Tsongas's attempted insult of somebody as a "pander bear." Was that Tsongas? Too tired to bother looking up.
11:01 Pence got sort of close to reality. Donald Trump has said out loud what lots of people are thinking. "Mexicans are rapists and murderers." "Keep the Muslims out." "In the good old days you could send protesters out on a stretcher."
11:05 Screw it, let's just cruise Twitter.
11:08 Dang, it's been about an hour and a half since we've had a round of "Lock her up!" So there's your Benghazi square on the Pence Bingo Card.
11:09 You know, there hasn't been a lot of Israel at this convention, has there?
11:10 A new chant rises, "We Like Mike!" But Mikey won't eat Life cereal. He hates everything.
11:12 If, in eight years, another Republican candidate plagiarizes this speech, nobody at all will notice.
11:16 More tweetorz
11:18 Play 'em off, Archbishop Demetrios!
Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.